US President Joe Biden failed to secure oil and security commitments from Gulf leaders at the Arab summit in Jeddah, Reuters news agency reported.
Biden’s visit to West Asia was primarily to ask oil-rich Gulf leaders to keep pumping more oil, which would lower gas prices in the United States. But no consensus emerged between Biden and the other Gulf leaders at Saturday’s meeting.
According to the Arab News newspaper, the 30-minute chat ended with Saudi Arabia saying it had no additional capacity to increase oil production beyond 13 million barrels per day.
The Arab Summit saw the participation of six Gulf States as well as Egypt, Jordan and Iraq.
“The United States is invested in building a positive future for the region, in partnership with all of you — and the United States is going nowhere,” Biden said, according to a transcript of his speech.
Biden, whose itinerary also included a visit to Israel, presented his vision and strategy for US engagement in the Middle East at an Arab summit in Jeddah.
The summit statement, however, had no indication that Biden’s meeting failed, it seemed vague. Saudi Arabia was also reportedly not in favor of a regional security alliance, which would also include Israel, to counter Iranian threats.
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“We think it is very useful to include as many capabilities as possible in this region and Israel certainly has significant air and missile defense capabilities, as they need them. But we have these bilateral discussions with these countries” , said a senior administration official. official told reporters, according to Reuters.
Notably, the summit was being held in the wake of skyrocketing US-Saudi relations following Biden’s outspoken condemnation of Saudi Arabia’s human rights record. and the murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi, where the US leader has vowed to turn the Gulf nation into a “pariah state”.
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Saudi Foreign Minister Prince Faisal bin Farhan Al Saud denied knowledge of talks of a Gulf-Israel defense alliance and added that the kingdom was not involved in such talks.
(With agency contributions)
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